Friday, June 20, 2008

Do the Wilpons listen, or learn ? Could this really go from bad to worse ?

Our friend, Adam Rubin, at the New York Daily News, has an article, “With Omar Minaya on the hot seat now, Tony Bernazard could get GM job,” that is certain to further enrage an already annoyed media and fan base.

Rubin’s complete article is at the Daily News web site, portions of which are below.

Omar Minaya may be the next one fired, with VP Tony Bernazard in prime position to assume the GM responsibilities if Minaya is ousted, insiders tell the Daily News. Bernazard appears to have gained the trust and respect of chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon.

Bernazard, whose responsibilities include overseeing the farm system (what a great job he’s done with that – have you read Baseball America’s review of the Mets’ farm system ? have you seen the winning percentage of the Port St. Lucie team ?), has differentiated himself from Minaya by positioning himself as someone who stresses homegrown players - resisting, for example, parting with young pitcher Deolis Guerra in the Johan Santana deal.

The lack of major-league-ready minor leaguers is a major vulnerability for Minaya, who inherited an $83 million payroll from Jim Duquette and raised it to $138 million in four years with wild free-agent spending while neglecting a farm system that has been unable to help the Mets when they have suffered injuries.

Minaya has some support with the media and fans, but, clearly now has the bulls-eye on his back. However, if Minaya is fired, and replaced with Bernazard, expect another blistering round of media articles, and fan backlash. Bernazard has a worse reputation than Minaya, and is not the answer.

If Minaya goes, Bernazard should go with him. The Mets can go outside of the organization to find a general manager who believes in building the farm system, and promoting prospects from within. It shouldn’t be difficult, either, considering that’s the widespread practice throughout baseball, as young home-grown prospects are being signed long-term, to save teams’ money by signing these players through their arbitration, and some of their free-agent eligible years. Would Minaya, if he feels that Bernazard is attempting to take his job, try to fire Bernazard ? Would the Wilpons allow it ? Can Fred & Jeff, who have been blasted throughout the national media, handle another round of backlash if Minaya is fired, and replaced by Bernazard ?

No comments: